The Leader’s Navigator Podcast

My daughter Hayley and I have been doing a podcast together since June of 2022. We have a wonderful time together and have shared over 60 episodes.

If you haven’t listened yet, we would love to have you pop by and check out a few episodes.

Some of our most recent topics include:

• Episode 61 – Finding Your IKIGAI – where your gifts and passion intersect with your contribution to the world.

• Episode 60 – Clarifying Your Values, Home, and the Authentic Journey

• Episode 59 – Finding Yourself in a World of Unrealistic Expectations: The Push for Perfectionism and Pressures of Popularity

What’s the difference between tension and relaxation?

I hate to admit it, but I have spent a good part of my life trying to live up to an image to impress others. I call it impression management.

It’s exhausting managing impressions and constantly regulating myself. There’s a constant fear of doing something that doesn’t correspond with the image I am trying to project.

The problem with living in fear is that it overpowers creativity, joy, inner peace, and spontaneity.

There’s a Zen saying: Tension is who you think you should be. Relaxation is who you are.

I guess this is a reason why I have spent a good part of my life teaching about authenticity. That which we are best able to teach others is what we are most in need of developing within ourselves.

Your phone is not your friend.

“People have always tended to be the servants of their technologies.” -Marshall McLuhan

Many couples have come to me for counseling who are actually “too married.” That is, they have an “enmeshed relationship,” characterized by a lack of boundaries, loss of individual identity, and fear of abandonment. In essence, they have no relationship with themselves separate from the relationship with the other.
They are entangled in each other’s web.

Indicators of an enmeshed relationship become obvious when I ask people to separate from their phones for an extended period. Solitude – time alone with your own thoughts – creates anxiety. Fear of missing out. Nervousness. Unease.

For those in enmeshed relationships, the strategy is to step away from the relationship and begin developing your identity away from the relationship. It’s paradoxical: the more you “need” the relationship, the more you need take a break from it.

I advocate the same strategy for those enmeshed in the relationship with their phone. Living an authentic life means developing a relationship with your interior self and the world around you.

Cal Newport offers three strategies I’ve adapted to combat having your phone be your “constant companion”:

  1. Use the phone foyer method. When you come home from work leave your phone, plugged in, by your front door in the foyer. If you need to use it, you have to go to the foyer and use it there.
  2. Do at least three things every day outside your house without your phone. Run an errand. Walk the dog. Visit a friend. Go to dinner. You don’t have to divorce your phone, just practice having an identify without it.
  3. Make your phone less interesting. Take off of it any app where someone makes money off of your attention when you tap on it. Devices and digital media were never designed to meet our emotional needs. They were designed as a tool – for sharing information and communication.

Your phone is not your friend. Your phone is a tool.

How to hold yourself accountable to be authentic.

Authenticity is when your actions are a full expression of who you are in a way that contributes to the world. You are in alignment with what life wants from you. The Authentic Way is the awareness that you don’t need to change yourself; you need to come home to yourself.

Words I hear used to describe what it’s like to be authentic, at home with yourself: happy, confident, peaceful, free, brave, calm, inspired, appreciative, alive, fulfilled, ‘you lose all track of time.’

Words used to describe when how you live is not the real you: exhausting, anxious, depressing, sad, irritable, stressed, lonely, disengaged, empty, lost.

How to hold yourself accountable to be authentic:

  1. Decision. Like any choice to change your life, it starts with a decision – a firm resolve to live your life authentically.
  2. A Benchmark. Have a sense of what authenticity feels like to you: have a vision of what “coming home” means to you. Know you’ll be “off course” much of the time in a world that expects much from us.
  3. Community. Authenticity is a lonely journey but it can’t be done alone. Community can come in the way of teachers, guides, confidants, and coaches – those who support you and hold you accountable to be who you are.
  4. Self-Reflection. The authentic journey is a contemplative journey. Reserve time on a regular basis to turn off technology to attend to the voice from within.
  5. Journaling. Regularly writing down your emotions, reflections, dreams, values, progress, and gratitude, can help keep you connected to your authenticity.
  6. Feedback. Be open to how you are impacting others. Stay humble. Being teachable is a core quality of authenticity.
  7. Uniqueness. Create a list of ways you come home to yourself, nourish yourself, and attend to these regularly (e.g. spending time in nature, with good friends, with animals you love, reading books, cooking, going to museums or the theatre, etc.)
  8. Service. Authenticity means bringing your gifts to the world in a way that makes the world better – even in some small way. Be sure you are intentional about making a difference.

This week is Mental Health Awareness Week

The theme for Mental Health Awareness Week this year is “My Story,” highlighting that we are all unique with valuable stories of the human experience.

Every one of us has been impacted by our own or a close friend or family member’s mental health challenge. Mental health affects us all. Let’s continue to work together to reduce the barriers for seeking mental health support. And let’s share our diverse stories to emphasize the crucial need for universal mental health care.

If you are in the Cochrane area, join Wayfinders Wellness Society for our open house and BBQ on our ranch this Thursday from 11-2. We are partnering with the town of Cochrane for this event. Register for this and other events this week in the Cochrane community at:

To learn more about what we offer at Wayfinders check out our website:

A Time For Letting Go

My mother used to say that she spent the first half of her life accumulating things and the second half getting rid of them. The important things in life, she learned, aren’t things.

At this stage of my life, I get it. After months of reflection, Val and I have decided to simplify our life and downsize. We have decided to sell our beautiful acreage and move to a smaller home.

While I’m not yet ready to retire, we want less stress and responsibility and want to free up more energy to focus on what truly matters. Simplifying our life will allow me to be more intentional with my work, live with fewer distractions, and create greater financial flexibility. It’s a journey of shifting my mindset and priorities towards what truly brings us joy and meaning.

I’ll deeply miss the forest, the nature conservancy in our backyard where I walk the dogs every morning, and the creek our family and friends have played in for years. But with our kids now launched and busy building their lives, it’s time to step aside and give someone else the opportunity to build memories in this beautiful location we have enjoyed all these years.

This is a transition time for us: for letting go, grieving and celebrating.

As we go let, my hope is to make room for something new to emerge, to continue to be a guide to those I serve – with greater clarity, renewed energy, and focus. I look forward to sharing the journey with you in the coming weeks with the hope it will inspire you to live with peace and alignment to your values.